If I had a dollar for every time someone contacted me to sell their stuff- I would be rich by now. The truth is that when folks contact me to sell their stuff-compensating me or my sister for our efforts has never occured to them.
There are consignment stores to sell second hand furniture but guess what? They don’t work for free either. Be prepared to lose 40-60% of the selling price to the consignment store.
When social media connections email me with photos of something they want to sell at their price, I suggest several selling outlets and remove myself entirely. Why? Experience & Liability. Listing fees & more. I’m not a selling volunteer. I can sell your item but, it’s going to cost you a minimum of 40% for me to get involved.
Finding a selling outlet that’s effective isn’t cheap or easy. Yesterday, a prominent Fort Worth woman who “knows your husband and that you help people” reached out through my sister site We Barter Dream Events- The Pawning Planners.
What she needed was for someone or a team to help clean her house & get rid of unwanted items for a quick home sale.
I’m going to be blunt here- we don’t commit ourselves to cleaning up your mess or making you money just because you asked us to or just because we are good at what we do. No one does!
Sure, we can help you but it’s not free. We don’t cart off junk but know several businesses that do. We also don’t clean houses but can refer you to connections that do. Neither of these services is offered at no cost though. Our connections like us are not volunteers.
Trying to convince these “all about me” types of inquiries that while helping others, we are helping ourselves isn’t nearly as easy as someone with common sense might assume.
My reasons for not getting involved stem from a history of trying to help these folks out that cost me money? How? You’re gonna love this! A few years ago, I decided to help someone out by selling their Brown & Jordan sofa set because they wouldn’t stop bugging me about it.
I was well aware of the market because I had sold millions of dollars of patio furniture and was the top DFW producer of high end furniture for years. Let me start by saying this “friend” didn’t buy the furniture from me quite the contrary, my coworker got the sale and more importantly, the commission!
The only reason I agreed to do this deal was the fact that my husband worked with the “I know you sell a lot of stuff” person who had the benefit of “gifting” me with not only the responsibility of cleaning and repairing his furniture prior to listing it and selling it, paying him the money and finally, delivering it to the buyer.
Needless to say, I’m still upset about being taken advantage of by the person who thinks my world revolves around making money for him at my expense.
I go to their home and pick up the furniture with filthy cushions and take them home to go through the process of cleaning them and sending one of the torn cushions to my upholsterer.
Upon finishing the hours of labor and expense of repair, I take photos and list the set on my Ebay page for Texas Twins Treasures.
A few days later, a buyer purchases the item and requests delivery because it had local pickup. I lived in Lakeside and my SUV was far too small to move a sectional.
Meanwhile, the person who asked me to sell it continues to ask if I’ve sold it.
I wind up renting a box truck for $175 and paying for gas to drive from Lakeside to Coppel, Texas. I successfully sell the item after all of this work for $1675.00 but after deducting the Ebay listing fees & final value fee of $167, I also “get stuck” with the truck rental and gasoline along with the four hours cleaning the set and cost to repair a cushion of $46.
When I advised this “friend” of my expenses to sell the item, I’m told “I asked you to sell it for me. I didn’t tell you to rent a truck or repair the cushion. I told you to clean it up and sell it.” The end result? I spent over $200 and six hours of cleaning the set to sell someone else’s item and worked my ass off to do it.
This “lesson learned” was a real eye opener for me. I bent over backwards to make someone else money and “no good deed goes unpunished.”
A few weeks later, this same “friend” asked me about selling recliners for them. I politely declined and suggested Craigslist or eBay. For those wondering about the liability of selling an item for someone else, I’m going to enlighten you.
If you sell something for someone and are unaware of any damage- the item can get you in hot water with eBay AND PayPal as well as getting you a neutral or negative feedback on your account.
IE: If you are selling something for someone else, be advised that you will be responsible as the seller of there is a problem with whatever you’ve sold as a favor.
An unknown problem can and will cost YOU money or your stellar reputation on eBay. There is a lot of risk but NO REWARD if you are wondering what I mean.
After the Brown & Jordan fiasco, I knew to never get involved cleaning or repairing something for someone else to make them money but two more things would “pop up” to gut punch me.
My dad had a beautiful Chanel dress that his deceased wife had owned and asked me to sell it. She had only worn it once and I knew the market value. I spent thirty minutes getting good photos and paid listing fees on my eBay site. It sold quickly and I went to the expense of packaging and mailing it along with the necessary eBay and PayPal fees.
I sent the money via PayPal to my dad and you can imagine my horror when the buyer filed a claim that the item wasn’t delivered. I never ship anything that isn’t priority now because that dress cost ME $340 out of my eBay/PayPal account not my dad because I had already gave him the money and got stuck “holding the bag.” Favors can be expensive.
A few weeks later, my neighbor asked me to list an expensive ski jacket her husband had bought but wasn’t in love with. I took the photos and uploaded to my account.
For those unaware, listing an item on eBay requires a lot of information and photos uploaded along with listing fees and final value fees. IE: it’s a time consuming and expensive process.
A few days later, the item sold and I paid my neighbor less the fees and shipping (yes, I had learned from the dress to ship priority and to deduct my eBay fees and PayPal expenses up front).
A week later, the coat was returned. The problem? It didn’t fit. I had to refund the full cost and suck up the relisting fees while praying it would sell again. Luckily, it did or I would’ve been stuck with a coat that didn’t fit and, I didn’t need!
There are reasons that I’m not interested in doing favors for other people that cost me money. Selling your items is time consuming and risky for me.
I’m happy to tell you how to do it yourself but please don’t ask me to do all of the work, take all of the risk and expect me to give you all of the rewards. I’m a businesswoman not your employee.
Texas Twins Treasures has a stellar reputation on eBay. Why? I bend over backwards to make buyers happy. You don’t keep a 100% Feedback on eBay without working to make clients happy. No one does.
I can’t tell you how many times someone has contacted me after buying something to tell me “the color is different than the photos. Can I get a discount?” Here’s one every eBay seller hates to hear “your shipping is too high-I live on the UK and I want free expedited shipping.”
If you have offers available on your item, set decline limits or everyone will offer you ridiculous amounts and you will spend far too much time responding to them. We ship daily priority but it isn’t free to us and it won’t be free to you either. International shipping is $24 & up.
Texas Twins Treasures is key to making The Pawning Planners work. Why? We sell refurbished items and recover expenses for bartered events here.
Up to 20 Sponsored families for Weddings and Funerals are funded through the revenue generated on this site. If we spent all of our time selling stuff for other people that would never benefit our clients or businesses, we would be broke by now. Business is Business and no business works for free.
Ironically, I’ve had a few requests to reupholster someone else’s furniture because “they heard I enjoy stripping, staining & reupholstering furniture.” I don’t “enjoy” hard work. I do enjoy hard work that pays off with a return on my investment. I have no interest in reupholstering someone’s furniture because they think I enjoy it. I enjoy making money and reupholster furniture to get it.
Reupholstering a sofa is easily $600 for labor and $400 and up for the upholstery to give you a better idea of the expense involved.
The reason that I go to the expense and time in involved to successfully flip items is based entirely on making a profit for me and my businesses-not you or your friends who think I love spending my time and money on upholstery to benefit you by reupholstering or cleaning your furniture and if that weren’t enough, expecting me to sell it for you and deliver it if needed. Sure, I can do all of those things for a profit or “cut” but, my efforts are far from free.
Profits from Pawning Planners Apparel fund families with no money or trade. The reason that these items sell quickly is because they feature my twin sisters saucy and truthful observations of others.
Customized shirt sales are up 300% and you can find your favorite quote by reading this blog-Cindy Daniel Has Something To Say About Everything!
From Moochers to Morons to being busy to being offended to being taken advantage of and everything in between, my gingertwins observations might be hillbilly oriented but they are accurate and honest which is why they are translated in numerous languages worldwide. #Cindyism Quotes can fit nearly any and all situations with a hint of #cynicism.
Please don’t expect me or my sister to bend over backward accommodating your needs because “we help people.” The people we help aren’t rich and have no one else to help them.
We refer to these Moochers with a few of my sisters classic and more importantly, on point #cindyisms-“Common sense is like breath spray-the people that need it the most won’t use it but get up in your face anyway.”
Another #cindyism observation that would do well in these types of instances would be “Don’t invite me to dinner while expecting me to buy the groceries and cook!” My favorite is “some folks ain’t worth the salt it would take to jerky EM!”
Last year, I went to an estate liquidation request to appraise the home. The smell of cat urine was so strong I nearly threw up. The “client” wanted everything in the house (except a 1920’s organ) removed so he could sell the house. The only item of value was the organ that he had conveniently “decided to keep.” The end result? I wished him good luck and bid him farewell.
That Hoarder Home was full of junk and trash along at least 10-20 feral cats. No one would have taken that dirty job for less than 5k but he wasnt offering money-he was offering a houseful of trash in exchange for an empty home & easy money.
“We cant make gravy outta water.” If there isn’t anything in it for us, we walk away from a job of breaking our backs to benefit them.
I often tell my readers that “I can’t make this shit up because I can’t.” We don’t take on every job just because we are asked to. In fact, I turn down requests all of the time when they are an “all for me and forget you” endeavor.
Helping people doesn’t mean we enjoy being taken advantage of and never has. “Just because I open the front door doesn’t mean I won’t or can’t show you to the exit when you have an outrageous request.”
We have Bridezilla & Guestzilla Clauses listed for sound reasons, we’ve met a few and decided with caring hearts to muddle through the trenches and crawl over glass to make them happy with one request after another while putting ourselves through Hell.
Too much is never enough with a demanding diva. No matter what you do, these egomaniacs will always ask for something else and need to learn that “just because you bought a ticket to the movie doesn’t make you the STAR of the SHOW.”
Muddling through a bad experience with divas or outlaws (the opposite of inlaws) was a learning curve and we don’t do that anymore. Sadly, after bending over backwards to help those folks, we got stiffed for services rendered because we trusted them to pay us. That’s right. My entire team took one belt after the other for far too many Bridezillas who think the world owes them a living. The world doesn’t and we don’t either.
We only work for free if you are low income and have nothing to trade or you’re military, fire, police or first responders and live in the DFW Area. Why? Travel is expensive and we often do Funeral Ceremonies at no cost when needed.
Military, Fire, Police and First Responders have a special place in our hearts because we are from a military family and many of our relatives are either military or first responders.
Volunteers or military members are both tight on cash. In these situations we will go above and beyond because their situation often warrants any and all help we can give them.
Often, revenue from paying clients booking through Texas Twins Events funds the expenses involved to refurbish or reupholster bartered items. IE: The Pawning Planners take trades. Texas Twins Events clients pay for services. Texas Twins Treasures recovers event services by selling items taken in trade with refurbishing expenses paid through Texas Twins Events bookings.
Sponsored events are also funded through Texas Twins Treasures. All THREE businesses work with each other to give over 1,000 families a Dream Event the past nearly 7 years.
So, for what should be obvious reasons, my family and I help “families” booking through Texas Twins Events or The Pawning Planners not someone who wants to make money by having us sell their items at our expense.
I read “I heard you help people” everyday on emails and texts. We do but the people we help aren’t someone wanting to make extra money without compensating us for our efforts.
Telling me “you’re great at selling things-I need you to sell this for me” isn’t benefitting me, my family or our clients. But, I hear it everyday.
Back to the prominent woman who could easily hire someone to cart off unwanted items and help to wash her windows and clean her home so she can sell it. I advised her of several businesses who could help her.
This lady was worth millions and wanted to sell her home. Her church had went through and taken what they wanted I.E. the most valuable items and wanted us to sell the rest to donate to her missionary friends. What a nice plan if you can find anyone to do all of the work and clean up for free but, you can’t.
We do not clean houses or cart off items no one is going to buy. Why? Because we are busy helping clients from Texas Twins Events & The Pawning Planners or refurbishing, reupholstering & selling items at Texas Twins Treasures.
We are not a cleaning service either. If you need maids or clean up crews, I’m happy to refer you to someone but, be prepared to pay them as our connections don’t work for free either.
Simply because you “heard” we help people doesn’t mean we are going to help you because you don’t want to hire or pay people or even go to the expense or take the time to sell items yourself, especially when you could easily hire someone since you are rich and donate millions to your church.”
I suggested that this lady contact her church and ask them to help you since they obviously are benefitting from her generosity.
We aren’t volunteers and we don’t benefit from your charitable contributions to others. I require contracts for any service we offer to clearly define what we are going to do and more importantly, how we are going to get paid.
It’s wonderful this lady is helping her church and missionaries but, we fund our own charitable efforts. The funding we use to help others comes from The Pawning Planners, Texas Twins Treasures & Texas Twins Events NOT well funded churches.
We don’t have sponsors or benefit from your numerous charitable entities. We fund ourselves through hard work, perseverance and drive. Telling me about all of the people you help does nothing to pay our bills or, our staff.
Although her way of explaining the many people she’s helped as a “explanation” of wanting us to work for free to benefit her church is a new one for me, her explanation is far more one sided than I could ever explain in terms that she would understand. It’s “Not My Luggage-Not My Trip.”
We help families and are dedicated to changing the wedding and events industry one barter at a time and are far too busy to fix problems for folks who want to #cindyism “hang their laundry on our clothes line” or “be like a blister by showing up when all of the work is done.” We are simply too busy to waste our time doing your dirty work for no reward….
Wendy M Wortham